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It's all smooth sailing for Huegill
David Beniuk
16:54 AEST Fri Dec 28 2012

Geoff Huegill's transformation from super fish to sea dog seems almost complete.

The former Olympic swimmer had spoken about a serious move into the sailing world before he undertook his second Sydney to Hobart race aboard Ragamuffin Loyal under the legendary Syd Fischer.

And 85-year-old Fischer, in his 44th race to Hobart, has confirmed he rates Huegill as a sailor.

"He's bloody good," Fischer told reporters at Constitution Dock.

"He worked hard. He didn't let up."

Told of the veteran's comments, Huegill was quick to deflect the praise.

"It's a team effort," the 33-year-old said.

"You do what needs to be done, whether you're pulling sails from underneath or having to get on the grinders when you're hurting and you're tired.

"Just being there for the rest of the guys, that's the most important thing.

"I'd like to think I went all right but when I have a look at some of the senior guys that are sailors, you watch how they tick and they're just machines, a different kettle of fish."

Huegill was in training and missed last year's win on then-named Investec Loyal after completing the race in 2010.

And he's left the door open to making it a serious career change.

"I'll always put my hand up," he said.

"We've still got 300-odd days before that comes around so just one step at a time really."

He said there were some parallels between his two sports in the adrenaline build-up before a race.

"At the start of the race there was a comparison there between getting up behind the blocks and doing a Hobart," he said.

"The upside to getting up behind the blocks, my race is over in 50 seconds so learning to pace myself for two days was one of the biggest things that I've had to learn."


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